So I’m at the Irish Whiskey Museum. That’s a different review for a different day. Suffice to say, the tour was great fun.
As part of the tour, we tried 4 different Irish whiskies and then got to make our own blend. The grain we tried? Glendalough Double Barrel.
Thus I was able to review Glendalough Double Barrel. All good, eh? I’ve reviewed the others before. Try to guess them in the comments below!
This whiskey is a 4 year old single grain that was initially matured in ex-Bourbon casks before being finished in ex-Oloroso sherry casks for 6 months. It’s the entry option for Glendalough, and contrary to the 7 and 13 year old, not a single malt.
Not going to lie: A young single grain isn’t perking me up too much, however it’s not poitin, so I’m happy to drink it.
So let’s see how this tastes, shall we?
Price: No longer available at the LCBO
Cask Types: ex-Bourbon, finished in ex-Oloroso sherry casks (for 6 months)
Colour: 5Y 9/8
Nose: Nail polish remover, honey, caramel, banana candy, almond
Initial nose is a lot of alcohol burn. It needs time to stay there and think about what it did. Really think about it.
Given some time, there’s more honey and caramel notes. The grain gives us that fake banana flavour too, which I’m a junky for. Even more time gives us a nuttiness that pairs well with the other notes. Really quite nice.
Taste: Candy banana, caramel, pepper, strawberry, margarine
Glad I gave this time. My wife noted that she wasn’t a fan of the flavour right off the bat. I warned her. I think. I may have been drinking.
Nice amount of candy banana, some caramel, and some burn to it. Little bit of fake butter notes in here. It’s not bad, especially for a single grain that’s so young. Surprising.
Finish: Grain, banana, arugula, light molasses, dry sand, pear
Dry, and grainy. Grain is the main flavour here. It develops some drier white wine notes, but nothing to write home to. Lots of pepper vegetal notes too.
Conclusion: I mean, if you have to buy a young single grain, this would be it. Certainly tastes better than one would ever expect that style of whiskey to taste under 30 years. Yes, I know it’s a new distillery, and yes, I understand that making grain whiskey is cheaper. I’m just saying what Ireland argued in court years ago: Grain whiskey isn’t really flavourful enough.
That said, this is full of banana candy, caramel, and some nice light notes. They’ve taken good casks and finished this like they should. It’s not polishing a turd, they’ve taken something that fights against good flavour and done more than I could have imagined. So good on them.
I’d buy the 7 year over it.
World Whiskey review #240, Ireland review #58, Whiskey Network review #1060